The thought of taking a cruise has always appealed to you. It sounds like the perfect vacation – exploring different countries, relaxing on the deck with a cocktail in hand, and enjoying delicious food. But you’re worried about the cost. How can you enjoy a cruise without spending all your hard-earned savings?
In this guide, I’ll show you how to save money on cruises without sacrificing your dream vacation.
1. Try to book as early as possible
If you’re looking for a deal on a cruise, booking early is the best way to save money. Cruise prices typically go up as the departure date gets closer, so it pays to plan ahead.
Watch prices about six months before your desired sailing date to get the best price on a cruise. That’s when most cruise lines release their initial pricing for the year. The best deals don’t last long, so if you see one, grab it!
Prices tend to fluctuate during the months leading up to a cruise, so it’s important to stay flexible with your travel dates as well if you are on a budget.
2. Be careful with handouts
When it comes to learning more about a particular cruise line or ship, cruise brochures are a wise place to start. There’s usually a lot of in-depth info about each line, along with helpful itinerary schedules and deck plans. In a nutshell, you can get almost all the information your need for your cruise.
However, the brochure prices are usually much higher than in reality. I mean, you can find much better deals, so you can get the particular cruise at a lower price. It’s tempting to get the wished cruise as fast as possible, but you should do your research before booking if you want to save money.
3. Check out if you are eligible for discounts.
Some of the most common people eligible for cruise discounts are seniors, military personnel, and families. Seniors can often get discount cruises by booking through certain travel agencies or being AAA members. Military personnel can usually get discounts on cruises by showing their military ID when they book. Families can also get discounts on cruises, although these deals are often not as good as the ones offered to seniors and military personnel. Some cruise lines also offer special rates for groups of 20 or more people.
4. Make your booking during the wave season and Black Friday
The wave season is the busiest time of year for the cruise industry. It runs from January through March, and during this time, cruise lines offer their best deals and discounts on cruises. If you’re considering booking a cruise, wave season is the best time to do it.
Black Friday is another perfect time to snag a great deal on a cruise. Whether you’re looking for a last-minute getaway or planning for next year, plenty of Black Friday cruise deals can be had.
From all-inclusive packages to cruises that include airfare and hotel stays, you can find some great bargains if you know where to look. Here’s how to find the best Black Friday cruise deals to save hundreds of dollars:
- Check with your favorite cruise line or travel agent. Many of them will offer special Black Friday deals that you can take advantage of.
- Search online for “Black Friday cruise deals.” You can compare prices and see what’s available.
5. Travel Off-Season and Save Big
If you want to save money on your next cruise, consider traveling during the off-season. During this time, rates are typically lower, so you can take advantage of all the amenities without spending a lot of money. You’ll also avoid the crowds and have a more relaxing vacation. Just be sure to check the weather in your destination before you book, as off-season travel can sometimes come with unpredictable weather. This cheaper option works well for those who are flexible with dates.
6. You could get bonuses if you work with accredited travel agents
Booking your next cruise with an accredited travel agent has many benefits. For starters, you can often save money by taking advantage of their discounts and special offers. They also have access to exclusive bonuses and perks that you won’t find anywhere else.
Perhaps most importantly, though, accredited travel agents are experts in the field of cruises. Due to their knowledge of the industry, they can help you avoid any potential pitfalls. They’ll also be able to offer advice on which cruises are right for you based on your individual preferences and needs.
There is no doubt that working with an accredited travel agent is one of the smartest things you can do to ensure that you get the best deal for your next cruise vacation.
7. Find cruises that are closer to your home
The cost of airfare is often one of the most expensive parts of taking a cruise. The price of your plane ticket can be pretty high if you’re traveling to a distant location. But if you’re staying closer to home, you may be able to find a deal on airfare or even drive to your port city.
There are plenty of great cruise destinations that are close to the United States, so you won’t have to spend a lot on airfare. The Caribbean is one of the most popular cruise destinations for those who want to stay close to home, and Mexico and Canada are also popular options.
Another factor to consider is the length of the cruise. Cruises are usually more expensive the longer they are.
8. Don’t be afraid of lower decks and inside cabins
If you want to save a little money on your next cruise, consider booking a room on one of the lower decks. While most people think of the upper decks when they envision a cruise ship, the lower levels can offer just as good of views—if not better—for a fraction of the price.
Lower decks are often just as close to the activities as upper decks. If you want to be right in the middle of all the excitement, a lower deck room is often just as good (if not better) than an upper deck room.
If you don’t stick to the ocean view from your room, you can save even more money by booking an inside cabin.
There are no windows in the inside cabins on cruise ships. They are located in the middle of every deck, not along the edges. These rooms have no natural light, so they are often the cheapest cruise rooms available. They are often the cheapest cabins on board as they are the smallest.
9. Consider all-inclusive cruises
When you book an all-inclusive cruise, the price of your room includes all meals and activities on board the ship. This means you won’t have to spend extra money on food or entertainment while on your trip. All-inclusive cruises often include airfare. Thus, there are no additional costs to worry about.
Despite this, if you cannot take advantage of these perks, this vacation option might not be worth it. When you spend most of your time outside the resort exploring the destination, eating in local restaurants, and doing other activities, all-inclusive vacations won’t save you money.
Travel websites and agencies will sometimes offer special discounts on all-inclusive cruises, so it’s worth checking around for deals before booking your trip.
10. If you want to cut costs, choose a cheaper cruise.
Consider using a cheaper cruise line for your next cruise if you wish to save money. While the amenities and services may not be as luxurious as some of the more expensive lines, you can still enjoy a great vacation without spending a fortune.
Don’t forget to compare the prices of different lines before booking. Just because one line is cheaper that doesn’t mean it’s the best deal. Comparing prices is important. Shop around. Also, it’s essential to read reviews from other travelers.
Here are a few of the best, cheaper cruise lines to consider for your next affordable vacation.
Norwegian Cruise Line: This company offers a variety of itineraries at an affordable price. Their ships are also known for being some of the most spacious and modern at sea.
Carnival Cruise Line: Another affordable option for budget-minded travelers, Carnival offers fun-filled cruises at an unbeatable value.
Royal Caribbean International: An excellent third choice for someone looking to take a cheaper cruise is Royal Caribbean International. The company offers a variety of itineraries and ships to suit any traveler’s needs.
One more tip. Typically, older ships, which are still in good condition, are also more affordable. They offer almost the same cruise experience as the new ones. They are just cheaper.
11. Use the power of the internet to find the best deals available
Many people don’t realize that researching online before booking a cruise can save them a lot of money. Many websites offer discounts and deals on cruises, so it’s definitely worth taking some time to surf the web for sales before you book.
One of the best ways to find discounts is to search for “cruise deals” on a search engine like Google. By doing so, you can find websites offering special cruise deals with comparisons. Another tip is to sign up for email newsletters from cruise lines or travel websites. This way, you’ll be among the first to know about any last-minute deals, sales, or discounts that are being offered.
So before you book your next cruise, be sure to do some research online and see if you can find any great deals.
To sum up
In conclusion, these tips to save money on cruises: book early, be flexible with dates and destinations, find a cruise line that offers discounts for your situation, look for last-minute deals, and compare prices. When you research and plan your trip, you can easily find cheaper prices with just a little effort.